site.btaEnvironmentalists Urge President to Enforce Partial Veto on Amendments to Forestry Act
Environmental organizations, part of the ForTheNature Coalition, urged President Rumen Radev to enforce partial veto on the amendments to the Forestry Act adopted on second reading by the National Assembly on January 27. On Wednesday morning they organized a flash mob in front of the Presidency. The performance's goal was to present the consequences of cutting down trees. One of the participants was playing the role of a logger, holding a wood cutter.
"Some very concerning amendments were left in the bill that allow the executive to carry out unjustified logging", said Dobromir Dobrinov, a member of WWF Bulgaria, adding that the changes make the validation of illegal logging easier.
The ForTheNature Coalition warns that the adopted amendments create a parallel mechanism which allows the introduction of changes of the forest management plans but not necessarily in compliance with the forest inventory data and without the need of any public discussions. The changes in the Forestry Act are introducing new terms such as "forced logging" and "stewardship guidelines" but without any legal definitions, which leaves room for free interpretations from the executive and other interested parties, the environmentalists say.
The amendments to the Forestry Act were adopted on second reading by the Parliament last week. The final texts, shaped by the MPs after almost an hour of debates, united parts of the three originally submitted bills: by Desislava Taneva of GERB-UDF, Ivan Ivanov of BSP for Bulgaria and Ivan Hristanov of Continue the Change.